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Tancredo Joins the Fray

With little money, little chance of winning, a crappy web operation, and a single issue on the agenda, Tom Tancredo has thrown his hat into the ring and hopes to emerge from the fracas with a better office, and a new title – President. Driven by little more than a hardcore following on immigration, Tancredo expects to vault from third or fourth place in Iowa to the Oval Office.

Did I miss something, or is Tancredo running for President in 1984? The WaPo article is full of comments by him that make me think he’s stuck in a time warp.

“That’s how you get there,” he said. “You do well in Iowa, you do well in New Hampshire.”

Tancredo’s goal for the Iowa caucuses are fairly modest. He said he would like to finish third or fourth in Iowa, a placement he contends would be enough to help launch him to the GOP nomination.

Well, sure. That’s how it worked when Jesus walked the Earth, but Tom, the rules have changed. Call it “new math” but the expectation is close to 53% of the votes will be cast in primaries by mid-February. If you don’t have the dough to be competitive in 15 or 20 states by the end of the year, 4th place in Iowa and New Hampshire will get you nothing but a spot on the Also-Ran Hall of Shame. Add to that his silly concept of constituency.

“We have something they don’t have _ a group of people out there who are there because of an issue,” Tancredo said. “And they’re never going to have that. They can use their 100 million to try and buy constituency. I have it. It’s natural. It’s there.

Great. You know who else had a constituency? Alan Keyes. He was one of the greatest single-issue campaigns of all time. He had what many have claimed to be the lifeblood of the party – the radical pro-life, “life begins when you think about banging somebody” crowd. That was a constituency. It was natural and there and in a three way race in 2000, Keyes came in dead last. Single issues don’t win campaigns.

You have a much bigger problem than Keyes, Tom. You’re not in a three way race. You’re in a ten way race that is getting crowded with more delusional candidates every day. The rules have changed. Your antiquated views of campaigns are cute and all, but the fact is the game is different, and you didn’t bring the equipment ($$$$$) to play.

Written by Michael Turk